Before cheerleading became an integral part of professional sport to help fans cheer on their team, it got its start at the college level. Over many decades, it has not only evolved as a competitive sport in its own right, but has also served as an emissary to draw attention to charitable causes and offer support in various ways.
Cheerleading has its origins at the University of Minnesota. The very first cheerleader was a University of Minnesota student named Johnny Campbell. During a soccer game, he excited the crowd by clapping, “Rah, Rah, Rah! Ski-u-mah, Hoo-Rah! Hoo-Rah! Varsity! Varsity! Varsity, Minn-e-so-Tah ! ” The date was November 2, 1898. The university then put together an encouragement team of six male students who continued to use Campbell’s original cheers. Although cheerleaders were originally all-male teams, by 1923 women were incorporated and ultimately made up the majority of participants. Cheerleading quickly began to include routines such as tumbling, gymnastics, and the use of megaphones during soccer games.
In 1948, a former Southern Methodist University cheerleader, Lawrence Herkimer, formed the National Cheerleaders Association. It was created to run cheerleader clinics, and in the 1960s, college cheerleaders held workshops across the country to teach high school teenage girls the basics of cheering. In 1965, Fred Gastoff invented the vinyl pompom which was introduced in competitions organized by the International Cheerleading Foundation. Today it is known as the World Cheerleading Association. Organized cheerleading competitions sprouted everywhere until 1978, when CBS broadcast the first college cheerleading championships, bringing more attention to the sport. While cheerleading rarely gained much attention in the 1960s, and cheerleaders weren’t exactly a reason to watch football, what started to emerge was organized professional cheerleading teams.
Prior to becoming the famous Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders, the Dallas Cowboys had a bravery team made up of male and female high school students called CowBelles & Beaux. During the 1970 football season, Cowboys manager Tex Schramm decided to completely overhaul the cheerleaders, making them an all-female team over 18, redesigning uniforms, creating new ones. encouraging routines in the dance style and forming a sexier look overall. hopes to increase attendance. The women not only had to be attractive and have athletic ability when auditioning, but they also had to possess raw talent as performers. The Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders made their first appearance on the sidelines during the 1972-1973 NFL seasons. Since then, they have appeared on numerous TV shows, have toured the United States and overseas, and have made regular appearances on USO tours to support our troops.
Modern cheerleading has changed dramatically from its original function of getting an audience to show support for the team. It has become a sport in itself, competing outside of sporting events as well. Cheerleaders are found at most colleges, high schools, and colleges in the United States with organized teams made up of students. Cheerleading scholarships are even offered by colleges that participate in cheerleading competitions.
Cheerleading teams began to emerge in the 1980s that had no association with a school or sports league. Their main focus was competition only. Divisions and teams have been created and sponsored by many different organizations and companies. Competitions are judged on the difficulty and execution of routines which include jumps, stunts, tumbling, creativity, staging, timing and the overall performance of the routine. These All-Star Team competitions are broadcast to a global audience which has led to thousands of cheerleading participants from countries around the world.
Professional cheerleading has taken cheerleaders beyond the realm of cheering at games. He broadened their horizons by doing charitable work and philanthropy, television performances, advertising, modeling and motivational speeches. Cheerleading has come a long way.